Top 5 Off-the-Beaten-Path Places in Florence

Jacquelyn O’Malley is a student at The College of New Jersey and an ISA Featured Blogger. Jackie is currently studying abroad in Florence on an ISA Summer 3 program.

1. Giuliano Ricchi‘s Jewelry Studio (12 Piazza S. Spirito)

When I overheard a classmate talking about her €6 bracelet made out of a Euro coin, I had to find out how to get one for myself.  Thankfully I discovered Florence’s hidden gem right across from the Santo Spirito Church.  At first, I felt a little strange knocking on a stranger’s resident building but I was immediately relieved of any apprehension as I entered studio.  Not only does he make his famous Euro bracelets, but he also sells his signature hand-crafted bracelets, necklaces, jewelry boxes and picture frames that he also sells in Neiman Marcus catalogs.

2. Fiesole

Impressed with the view from Piazzele Michaelangelo?  Then you need to take a trip to Fiesole, a small hill town just 15 minutes outside of Florence.  Take Bus 7 to the last stop at Piazza Mino de Fiasole and enjoy the sunset as you dine at a local restaurant.

3 . Museo Salvatore Ferragamo (Via de’ Tornabuoni, 2)

Florence is home to the most brilliant artists of all time.  We have Giotto, Donatello, Botticelli, and how can we forget Salvatore Ferragamo, the shoe-God himself.  I had amazing time visiting the Ferragamo Museum, where I got to see the originals of his shoe collection.  It also serves as a tribute to Marilyn Monroe, who famously wore his shoes and dresses that are on display throughout the museum.

4. Secret Bakery

Craving a late night snack?  A lot of bakeries start preparing at 1 a.m. and if you’re lucky and super, super quiet, they’ll sneak you a fresh-out-the-oven chocolate filled croissant through their bakery window.  Half the fun is finding an open bakery on your own, so I won’t spoil the fun.  But I will give you a hint: head towards Santa Croce and follow the sweet smell of freshly baked bread and cupcakes.

5. Arno Dam

The Arno River is the second most important river to Italy next to the Tiber.  To get a closer look at the powerful river, you can actually walk out on to the Arno Dam and view the it flowing beneath the Ponte Vecchio.

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